UNIONDALE, N.Y. (Monday, March 8, 2021) – The Long Island Rough Riders are pleased to announce Stephen Roche’s advancement as the club’s Sporting Director for the upcoming 2021 season.
Roche served as the club’s head coach from 2018-20 and played for the club from 2013-17.
“I’m excited to advance my role within the franchise where I first started as a fan, then a player, and later as the head coach,” Roche, said.”
The new Sporting Director role for the Rough Riders franchise helps guide top-level youth players through the new USL Academy platform and advance players to USL League Two and to the professional ranks.
A native of Dublin, Ireland, Roche continues his role as an assistant men’s coach at Hofstra University, joining the Pride in June 2016. In his four seasons, Roche has helped the Pride to consecutive Colonial Athletic Association tournament appearances, with Hofstra advancing to the finals in 2018 and the semifinals in 2019.
Roche has been integral in the university’s recruiting efforts internationally and domestically, particularly on Long Island and in the northeast.
“With Roche’s recruiting experience and his distinct understanding of top-level players who can compete in the USL, it was a natural progression to select Stephen as the new Sporting Director for the club said Peter Zaratin, President of the Rough Riders.”
Roche, a former midfielder, played professionally with the University College Dublin Football Club in the League of Ireland premier division from Jan. 2009 through Nov. 2010. He joined FC New York (United Soccer League) in 2011. Roche played for Lansdowne Bhoys of the Cosmopolitan Soccer League from 2012-16 before joining the Rough Riders in 2017.
“Having played with the Rough Riders, I know the high expectations of the franchise, said Roche. “The goal is to win National Championships.”
The graduate of the Dublin Institute of Technology intends to announce his replacement as the Rough Riders head coach and build out a USL League Two and USL Academy team roster leading up to the start of the 2021 season.
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